Up until only a few years ago consumer spending was at a high, but with the economy crashing, consumers are now keeping a closer eye on their spending habits and learning how to save money anywhere possible. This goes double for single income families.
An easy way to save money would be to cut back your cable or satellite television options. Do you really need all those movie channels? Cancel them and pick up a dollar movie rental when you are in the mood for a movie instead. Depending on the price of your programming the money you save could be as much as $70. That’s an easy way to save money and not much of a compromise!
The home telephone is another area that should be reevaluated in order to save money. Do you really need a home phone? Would your cell phone suffice? Or vice-versa? Cancel what you can manage without. If you already have a cell phone family plan, it might be cheaper for you to get a free promotional cell phone to act as your landline phone instead of having an actual landline. Most cellular providers will offer an additional line for as little as $5 each month. This leads to a savings of as much as $95 a month! The money we save by not having a landline goes toward our Christmas gift money.
When shopping for children’s clothing, consider the amount of time the child will actually be able to wear that size. Why pay full retail on something that will only be worn for a short period of time? To save money, try shopping at yard sales or second hand for children’s clothing. If you know a parent who has children a size or two larger than your children, see if they would be willing to hand down some items. You can’t beat free when you are trying to save money! Make sure when your child outgrows the items to return them or save them so another family can save money.
Many websites offer free samples. Just do an online search and request all the samples you can. Usually when you request samples from a company they will send out great coupons along with the sample. This is great way to save money on the products that you love and use everyday.
Another way to get free samples and coupons for your favorite products is to write to the company. Companies love getting compliments on their products and will usually reward their loyal customers with free goodies and money saving discounts.
On the other hand, try not to be too brand loyal. Buy what is on sale, or even the generic option if one is available. Most generic products are produced by the larger brands, and then slapped with a generic label. When you buy brand name products, this is exactly what you are paying for, the name! So, save money by accepting the generic equivalent.
Another great idea to save money is to plan your weekly meals. This prevents having a pantry full of miscellaneous food items that get lost and end up expiring before they can be eaten. It’s also good to plan your meals around your local grocers sale items and specials. If your grocery store has a 10 items for $10 special, try to find meal options that include those items. The same goes for the meat specials. If ground beef is on sale, plan for tacos one night and chili another. You can save a lot of money just by preparing a meal plan around your grocer’s specials each week!
Following these guidelines will help you learn some simple strategies to help ease the financial burden and save money in a single-income family.